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SXSW 2017: Key Takeaways on Digital Marketing

SXSW 2017: Key Takeaways on Digital Marketing

Posted on Mar 13, 2017 by Emily Ballard

The world of marketing is ever-evolving, and though there is no universal marketing strategy that will “just work” for every type of company, some marketing professionals make it seem like they possess the secret formula. Now that digital marketing has taken over, there are many new aspects of marketing that we must take into consideration when creating our marketing strategies. I went to multiple masterclasses on digital marketing that were held during weekend one of SXSW, and I’m here to share my key takeaways on where to focus your efforts when creating your digital marketing strategy.

Digital Marketing:

Lawrence O’Connor spoke on the fundamentals of marketing and shared in-depth, valuable information on how to understand your target market. While I found the entire masterclass extremely valuable, these are the key points I took away when focusing on digital marketing:

  1. Know your business. Ask yourself these questions: Why does my business exist? Why should anyone care? What am I not willing to compromise? What are my goals and how will I get there?
  2. Don’t skip testing and keep track of your data. Try both qualitative and quantitative testing. For qualitative you can focus on surveys and interviews and for quantitative focus on user engagement. When focusing on engagement, always pay attention to your analytics. If you are constantly recording your analytics, you will see what is working for you and what’s not.
  3. Recognize which platform your target market uses most. From your data, you will see trends emerge for where the most engagement is occurring. You can then increase your engagement with your core-users, through strategic interactions in social media.

Creating Your Social Media Strategy:

Vin Clancy, social media expert and owner of Traffic and Copy, shared his insight on how to grow your business using only social media. Through his in-depth presentation covering social media strategies, the main focal points that stuck out for me were:

  1. Add value. Bring your expertise to the table and offer your knowledge. Nothing beats staying genuine and true to who you are.
  2. Show up every day. Posting every single day on social media keeps you relevant, and people will create a connection with you. Keep your content fresh and relevant, and focused when engaging with your followers.
  3. Use content scheduling. There are multiple websites such as Buffer, Hootsuite and Spredfast that you can schedule content up to months in advance on multiple platforms at a time. These are great tools to use when you are trying to reach your audience through multiple platforms, on a daily basis.

Both of these masterclasses dug way deeper into these marketing strategies and covered topics of which I could only scratch the surface with this post. These key takeaways will help in understanding the basics of digital marketing, and are essential to the early development of your marketing strategies.

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Our Top 4 Brand & Marketing Panels at SXSW

Our Top 4 Brand & Marketing Panels at SXSW

Posted on Mar 09, 2017 by Emily Ballard

Keeping up with target audiences can be a challenge in today’s world since social media was brought into the mix. This year, South by Southwest is hosting some of the most intelligent brand and marketing specialists. Technology is booming and more fast-paced than ever before, so the demand for insight and guidance has never been greater. At these four panels you will hear directly from industry leaders on how to build your brand, grab your target audience and keep their attention. These events range from beginner to intermediate, and are perfect if you want to delve deep into the newest marketing trends.

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Is Your Website’s Content Readable?

Is Your Website’s Content Readable?

Posted on Apr 05, 2016 by Jenna Meltzer

As experienced web developers, we know that the heart of a great website is found in the user experience– the satisfaction that your visitors receive when navigating through the pages on your website. One of the major parts of fulfilling a holistic user experience is the readability of the content on each webpage. It is crucial that the language and visual appearance of the content is easily digestible. If a user cannot comprehend what your organization is trying to communicate, it is not as effective, which can decrease traffic and in the end, lead to a loss in revenue. If you are unsure if your website’s content is readable or not, here are three easy tips to use:

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#3: Incorporate Appropriate and Relevant Content

#3: Incorporate Appropriate and Relevant Content

Posted on Jul 23, 2015 by Tanner Hertzog

It shouldn’t be a shock that having appropriate and relevant content on your website will aid to its overall success. The reason we mention it, though, is because often times people are not quite sure what “appropriate” really means for their brand, and why it is so valuable. With quality content comes not only quality engagement with your readers and target market but also increased search engine rankings for your web content as well. Sounds pretty valuable doesn’t it? Lets break it down more and take a closer look at why all of this is so important.

Consumer Engagement

The first thing you should think about when trying to write content for your website is, “Why do we have this website?” You need to understand what you are trying to accomplish with the site, and then mold your content to accompany those goals. Every time you write copy for a site, you should aim for it to entertain, inform, and entice the reader. It doesn’t matter how much you spend on SEO, if readers are not interested in reading it, they will leave the site. The reader and your goals should ALWAYS be the center of the writing, no matter what you are discussing on the page.

You see this over and over again were a company depends too heavily upon the weight and popularity of their brand to drive traffic to their site. Of course, it’s great that they have established their name or product in the minds of the public. But if you have one competitor who has done the same, and also provides quality written content on each page of their website, you’ve just lost a share of the market for no good reason.

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How to Achieve Social Media Stardom

Posted on Jan 23, 2013 by James Trumbly

Certain businesses have become overnight starlets in the world of social media. Somehow, things just clicked right from the start, and they “get it.” As it turns out, these social media divas all have some essential practices in common. With just a little effort, you too can enter the social media stratosphere.

  • Don’t be afraid to ask for fans.
    Let your email subscribers know about your social media efforts by including “Follow Us” buttons in each message you send, including customer service messages. You can also create a special campaign to request followers. Templates are free and easy to integrate into your newsletter format.
  • Incentivize subscriptions.
    One-time incentives such as a coupon or discount for liking a Facebook page can be excellent tools to acquire likes. You can also tempt would-be followers with promises of regular Twitter-only specials, sale previews, or VIP access to sales events.
  • Integrate your promotion efforts.
    Email marketing is a great way to spread the word about your social media efforts, but don’t ignore other promotion opportunities. Include a link on your website, solicit followers in your print advertisements, and pin your emails to your Pinterest board with keyword-enriched descriptions so your business shows up in a search.
  • Encourage your fans to interact.
    Engagement is one of the keys to succeeding with Facebook’s Edgerank algorithm. In order to show up in a fan’s newsfeed, you need to establish a pattern of interaction. Think outside the box and make it fun with ideas like:

    • Post photos of recent community events you’ve worked with.
    • Run a video contest.
    • Ask questions.
    • Invite fans to post their pictures to your page.
    • Link your blog posts to your Facebook page.
  • Tailor content to the strengths of each venue.
    Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube—each social media venue you choose interact with will exhibit various strengths and weaknesses. Don’t try to shove all of your content into one mold. Create conversations on Facebook, provide how-to ideas and inspirations for Pinterest, and tweet about your online sales. While it’s important to integrate your marketing efforts, it is also important to recognize that your fans have different expectations from each venue.

Proactively building your fan list, providing great content and incentives, encouraging interaction, and capitalizing on the strengths of your various social media endeavors will give you all the know-how, popularity, and success you need to catapult you to rock star status.


On the Eighth Day of Christmas, HMG Gave to Me: Eight Fans a-Liking

Posted on Dec 20, 2012 by John Wagner

The Holidays bring a lot of people to the shopping cart both virtually and through retail stores. There is no time like December to ramp up social media marketing and attract new subscribers and well… “Likes!”  So let’s unwrap Eight tips on attracting more Facebook Likes to your company’s page for Christmas!

1.  Leverage the store-front advantage! Incentivize your customers to check-in for discounts; if they’re willing to drive to your store, they’re willing to check-in!

2.  Post exclusive information or offers that will spark excitement and encourage subscribers to share the offerings.

3.  Words are great; however fans and prospective fans are twice as likely to engage with pictures, links and video content over text.

4.  Everyone likes cheap and free however, people like one thing a little bit more, competition! If the radio station can do it, so can your business. Create unique and engaging competitions every once in a while to attract new customers and more importantly, generate repeat visits to your page and website.

5.  Respond to posts and feedback though sentences that sound like they actually came from a real person, not a robot. Remember, there should always be time to communicate with your followers and clients, they are the first priority.

6.  Use links and keywords to help optimize your content so it’s seen by more friends of existing subscribers.

7.  Don’t just post, sponsor and promote the message.  Organic Facebook page visits are only a measurement of the contact with existing followers, so go viral and make money with videos!  About 80 percent of consumers say they are more likely to try a new product or service based on a suggestion from a friend through social media.

8.  Witty, funny and fresh content wins!  Don’t be shy when posting; get those creative juices flowing to maintain existing subscribers and draw new fan interest.

So just remember to engage, promote and respond to your fans quickly and your business will see the the “Likes” a-flowing this Holiday season!